Interviews With Rocky Mountain Horse Breeders

Interview in 2000 with
Nancy Groce, 
owner of Lone Star Stables 
in Abilene, Texas. 
How many years have you been involved with RMH?

7 years

What first drew you to the breed?

     My husband, Larry, had grown up working cattle on horseback.  We ranch and run cattle and had Quarter Horses for that purpose and also for pleasure and trail riding.  Larry was on a bird hunt in Wyoming with a friend a few years ago and one night they were sitting around the campfire when the topic turned to horses.

     Larry was complaining that our Quarter Horses were hard to catch and had bad  attitudes when they hadn't been ridden in 2 or 3 weeks.  His friend told him he needed to get some Rocky Mountain Horses because they always come right up to you, let you put a halter on and are ready and willing to do whatever it is you want them to. Larry was skeptical, but a couple of weeks later we hooked up a 2-horse trailer and headed for Arkansas, where his friend lived and had    Rockies.  We each rode a horse named Traveler who was a coming 3 year old and were just incredulous and the smooth gait and gentle temperament. We  bought Traveler and then headed to east Texas to look at some other Rockies. We bought a young gelding named Music Man, a 2 year old, and headed for home.  After a year or two of riding these geldings, Larry stated we 
should build a house on the ranch when we retired and breed and raise Rocky Mountain Horses. 

     Larry worked cattle on Traveler for several years.  Rockies are versatile and will do whatever you ask of them. 

What breeds or types of horses did you have prior experience with?

Quarter Horses

Sam'Sons Mountain Man
One of Lone Star Stables three top stallions.

What pitfalls did you find or mistakes did you make in your early years that  you can advise people to avoid?

Can't think of any.

What was the BEST decision you made in your early years?

To get involved with this breed.

What is your fondest memory of your RMH horses?

Larry and I gaiting all afternoon on our Rockies at our ranch.  Up and down the arroyos, through the creeks, stirring up quail and an occasional turkey or rattlesnake.

Do you have a favorite RMH?  If so, which one and why?

Traveler is my favorite RMH.  He's the first RMH I ever rode and he was my husband's horse.  Larry loved Traveler and they shared a common date, May 8th - that was Traveler's birth date and that's the date in 1999 when Larry died after heart bypass surgery.

What do you feel is the "commitment", if any, that a breeder has to make to the breed or the public?

To maintain the highest standard of care in the selection of breeding stock and bloodlines.

If there was only one reason you could give to people to own a RMH, what  would  it be?

The gentle temperament.

What are the strengths of the breed, and what are the weaknesses that you as a breeder think should be addressed?

Strengths are gentleness, friendliness, intelligence, smooth glide-ride, sensible, dependable, high degree of stamina and extremely hardy.  There are no weaknesses in this breed.  However, breeders must be selective and not produce ASD eyed Rockies.